De' fliengde Vuogtlänn'r

Observations, rants, etc. from a guy who really gets around.


40 Years On

It was exactly 40 years ago today that my Dad dropped dead of a heart attack at work. Someone once said that there are things we never really get over, we just get used to them. I guess this is one of them.

My Dad was an old-fashioned kind of guy -- an honorable man of simple tastes. He wasn't my "friend" -- he was my father; an authority figure. But that doesn't mean that he was a cold disciplinarian. We had an awful lot of fun together. As far as discipline goes, his greatest quality was consistency. If something was wrong today, it was wrong last week, and I can guarantee you it'd be wrong six months from now.

I learned a lot from my Dad, an appreciation of fine music being one of them. He taught me how to read music before I ever touched an instrument. (He had taught music professionally in New Bern, NC.) He played several instruments, steel guitar being the foremost. And he sang remarkably well. I can still hear him singing "Der frohe Wanderer" and "Tief d'rin im Böhmerwald". He was an excellent storyteller, too, and I only wish I had been able to record in some way the many stories he told us.

With the recent passing of Dan Fogleberg, I'm reminded of a very fitting tribute from one of his hits, "Leader Of The Band"

"The leader of the band is tired
and his eyes are growing old.
But his blood runs thru my instrument
and his song is in my soul.
My life has been a poor attempt
to imitate the man.
I'm just a living legacy
to the leader of the band.

I thank you for the music
and your stories of the road.
I thank you for the freedom
when it came my time to go.
I thank you for the kindness
and the times when you got tough.
And, papa, I don't think I said
'I love you' near enough."


No Nativity In Washington

(Hat tip to Teri Le for this one.)

The Supreme Court is said to have ruled that there cannot be a nativity scene in Washington, DC this Christmas.

This isn't for any religious or constitutional reason at all. They simply have not been able to find three wise men and a virgin in the nation's capitol.

There was no problem, however, finding enough asses to fill the stable.

The Day The Music Died (Again)

The music world has lost yet another legend. Dan Fogleberg has passed away from prostate cancer. Anyone not familiar with his music has no business calling himself or herself a music buff. His music was among what little that made the '70s bearable.

As a side note, my Dad was a professional musician and taught music. In fact, he started teaching me music a few years before he died. One of the greatest compliments I can pay to another musician is to say that my Dad would have liked his/her music. I'm sure my Dad would really enjoy such goodies as "Longer" or "Leader Of The Band".


Angels We Have Heard On High...

....weren't singing these songs. Hat tip to Lauren for this. :-)

There's a Christmas song to suit every personality.

* Schizophrenia: Do You Hear What I Hear?

* Multiple Personality Disorder: We Three Kings Disoriented Are

* Dementia: I Think I'll be Home for Christmas

* Narcissistic: Hark the Herald Angels Sing About Me

* Manic - Deck the Halls and Walls and House and Lawn and Streets and Stores and Office and Town and Cars and Buses and Trucks and Trees

* Paranoid: Santa Claus is Coming to Town to Get Me

* Borderline Personality Disorder: Thoughts of Roasting on an Open Fire

* Personality Disorder: You Better Watch Out, I'm Gonna Cry, I'm Gonna Pout, Maybe I'll Tell You Why

* Attention Deficit Disorder: Silent night, Holy oooh look at the Froggy - can I have a chocolate, why is France so far away?

* Depressive: Away In A Manger, leaving me here all by myself. No one to talk to. No one cares.

* Obsessive Compulsive Disorder: Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle, Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells , Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells...


Out To Launch

Bummer. It seems my friend Bonnie flew all the way down to Cape Canaveral to watch the shuttle lift off and the mission got scrubbed. All that travel for (relatively) nothing.

Reminds me of the time I was living in Landsberg am Lech. The town of Füssen was in our district, so we decided to take a little trip on Christmas Eve. First, we met up with our colleagues in Kempten/Allgäu and spent the night. On Christmas morning, we hopped a bus for Füssen to tour the two famous castles there -- Hohenschwanngau and Schloß Neuschwannstein.

And guess which is the only day of the year that Neuschwannstein is closed?

Bah, humbug.